Friday, February 28, 2014


ISDEV three-day academic meeting has concluded successfully today, Alhamdulillah. The first day, on Wednesday February 26th, saw the presentation of four PhD research proposals by four ISDEV PhD students; on the second day Thursday February 27th, three PhD theses presentations by three respective PhD students as mentioned in the earlier posting; and today, Friday February 28th, the ISDEV Director's Tarbiyyah and a lecture on Problem Statements by ISDEV Deputy Director Dr Zakaria Bahari.

About 100 ISDEV students came from inside and outside Malaysia, including from Dubai, to gather at the three-day meeting.

In the Director's Tarbiyyah today, I talked about Magnetic Institution as ISDEV should be. Magnetic Institution here means an institution which are able to attract as many people - scholars, students, researchers, et. cetera - as possible, via an energetic power. The engine of the power is the high accomplishment in every aspect, academically and socially. The academic aspect may include a quality high academic performance while the social aspect may include conducive entertaining academic atmosphere with good attitude (akhlak). All could be portrayed via blog and website as well as by individuals' perception and promotion.

To some extent, ISDEV already posseses such a power though still much to be desired, proven by what ISDEV has attained so far. But I alerted ISDEV fraternity that in having such a power, one has to attract the people to ISDEV as an institution (read jemaah), not to indviduals or moreover to a group within ISDEV. The former may strengthen ISDEV further while the later may break ISDEV into pieces.

Thursday, February 27, 2014


Alhamdulillah, how please one is to witness his students getting a nod to submit their theses for examination.

It is exactly what I feel right now - at the Thesis Presentation which is in progress at the moment at University Conference Hall, USM - witnessing Wan Norhaniza Wan Hassan, Mohd Syakir Mohd Rosdi, and Razali Othman given a nod by their respective PhD theses reviewers to proceed with the submission of their theses for examination.

It is a tradition at ISDEV for students to present their theses and reviewed by lecturers before they are allowed to submit their theses to be examined by their examiners. The tradition helps the students to polish their theses and ensures a high standard of the theses. Indeed it is one of the secrets of the high rate of the accomplishment of flying colours of ISDEV students, apart from serious but entertaining private and collective supervisions prior to the thesis presentation.

Wan Norhaniza works on the Index of Islamic-Based Development, while Mohd Syakir on Tahaluf Siyasi in Islamic Political Economy and Razali on Cash Waqf Revisited. Few weeks before, another PhD student of mine, Suraya Ismail who was working on the Thought of the Members of Shari'ah Advisory Council of Islamic Banking in Malaysia has passed with flying colours. Few more are in the pipeline; apart from the three above, are Shahir Akram Hassan who is working on Mantiq for Islamic Research Methodology and Farid Wajdi on the Law, Administration and Use of Halal Logo in Indonesia.

All in all, ISDEV is expected to graduate about 10 students this year, including Wan Anisah who will be facing her viva on 12 March, and Raziah Mohd Tahir, Radieah Mohd Noor and Helmi who are waiting for their viva voce at anytime now.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


During a lapse of six days, I was with two Islamic university colleges; first with Islamic University College of Selangor (KUIS) and second, with Islamic University College of Melaka (KUIM).

I was at KUIS on Thursday February 13 to fulfill an invitation to deliver two lectures on Academic Mentoring to its senior lecturers (those working at KUIS for more than 10 years). The first lecture entitles "Mentoring: Pros and Cons", while the second "Mentoring: ISDEV Experience".

I was amazed with the sincerity of the lecturers to gather experience, and touched to see three quarter of the KUIS' mosque was filled with lecturers and students performing zohor congregational prayer at the mosque; moreover to see students registering at a table outside the mosque after the prayer to break Thursday supplementary fast congregationally at the mosque later in the evening by just paying RM2.00 each. Brief fard 'ain lecture before zohor prayer and tazkiyah before the breaking of fast were also held. I came to understand that the time of the zohor and so are other congregational prayers is adjusted according to the completion of lectures, hence the ability of the substantial number of the jemaah to perform congregational prayer at the mosque.

Later, on Tuesday February 18, ISDEV was visited by an entourage of 6 lecturers and 43 students of KUIM specialising in Islamic Development Management. It was a great happy moment to receive the entourage that resulted from my participation in developing an undergraduate Islamic Development Management programme at the University. It was about two years ago when I was appointed by KUIM as an Advisory Panel to develop the programme. The programme was well-received and the students of the programme now have increased to more than 160, Alhamdulillah. They are ISDEV potential Master students and KUIM could definitely become a feeder for ISDEV future postgraduate students, InshaAllah.

During the visit too a letter of my appointment as a Visiting Lecturer for the programme was officially delivered by the head of the entourage, Dean Dr Nazli. I am also indebted to Musliha, our ISDEV Alumni who is a lecturer of the KUIM Islamic Development Management programme and the organiser of the visit. I am so happy that the ISDEV Alumni is playing her role in serving Islam and Allah SWT.

Sunday, February 16, 2014


Alhamdulillah, the Workshop on the Haj Research is over and I am now at KLIA Golden Lounge, waiting to board my connecting 1910 flight to Penang.

Prior to this, at the end of the Workshop in the afternoon, I was fetched by Prof Shukri, Director of the newly-established Institute of Islamic Product and Civilisation (INSPIRE) of Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) to visit the Institute and have a little discussion on its direction. I was appointed by the University as INSPIRE's Honorary Fellow quite recently.

I stretched out a few points at the discussion. Firstly, the "Islamic Product" of the Institute should mean Islamic Civilizational Product, to relate the product to civilization as in the name of the Institute. Secondly, for this, three phases of research could be carried out; firstly, rejuvenation of Islamic products used to exist in the history of Islam; secondly, study of the state and the betterment of existing Islamic products; and  thirdly, innovative creation of new Islamic products for contemporary use.

The product here covers all kind of products that contribute to the development of Islamic civilization, from food to economics, social, politics, heritage, culture, etc .

Saturday, February 15, 2014


Another invaluable gift to ISDEV from Allah SWT, Alhamdulillah.

On 10 January 2014 recently, USM Senate has approved the upgrading of ISDEV to a Centre of Excellence. And this morning, at the opening speech of Haj Research Cluster Workshop at Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT), USM Vice-Chancellor Professor Dato' Omar Osman annnounced the housing at ISDEV of the RM9.2 million Haj Research Project. The Project is undertaken by more than 50 scholars from USM, UTM, UniSZA, UMT, UPM, IIUM, and UMK, transdisciplinarily.

It is of course quite a challenge indeed, but it too hopefully, InsyaAllah, exhibits the recognition of not only by the Vice-Chancellor, moreover by Allah SWT. Subhanallah!

In his speech, the Vice-Chancellor too has raised 5 interesting important points. 

Firstly, Haj is an Islamic affair and the management of Haj too thus has to be Islamic. Secondly, the Project needs to introduce graduate programs in order to produce qualified Haj managers. Thirdly, ISDEV should fulfill the second points as it deals with Islamic development embedded in which is the Islamic Service Management. Fourthly, akhlak is badly needed in undertaking the Project, especially in related industry and agency engagement. Finally, fifthly, Haj Research Project has to be regarded as a struggle, not just as an academic research.

The Workshop is still on-going now, till tomorrow afternoon, InsyaAllah.

Friday, February 14, 2014


Safely landed Kuala Terengganu and checked-in at TH Hotel and Conventional Centre, Gong Badak, without anymore delay at KLIA, Alhamdulillah. I even have the time to enjoy ICT (ikan celup tepung) at the ICT Haji Pak Long (Seafood) at Telaga Batin, not far from the hotel. ISDEV PhD students who are teaching at Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) brought me there, after fetching me from the airport and checking-in at the hotel.

Interestingly, when arriving at the hotel, I was told that this is the hotel where swearing by al-Qur'an in front of the Chief Minister of Terengganu was held few days ago. It was done to prove that Terengganu football team, the T-Team, was innocent in a clashing incident with Johor football team during their football match not long ago. I am amazed at the Malays who could do so just for the sake of football!

There is also another interesting thing here. In front of the TH Hotel is the stadium known for its controversial fallen roof. It is now opened, so I was told, but naked, without the roof anymore! Audiences of any games held here are risked with sun and rain.


The problem seems to have not been settled as yet. MAS flyers face delays continuosly.

Last night on my way home from a talk at Kolej Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Selangor (KUIS), I was delayed at KLIA for about half an hour.

And right now, again I am stucked at Penang International Airport. My MAS flight to KLIA is announced to be delayed for 40 minutes.

I anticipate a sort of running, or at least jogging, at KLIA later on to catch my 1450 connecting flight to Kuala Terengganu.

May Allah protect me from missing the KL-Kuala Terengganu flight, or else I would be delaying in attending the Workshop on Haj Research there.

MAS oh MAS. Previously adverse weather and late arrival of aircrafts from other sectors became your excuses. Now weather is good, what else is your excuse? The late arrival of aircrafts from other sectors? Ha ha.

Saturday, February 08, 2014


Time is running fast indeed. Just realised it has been about four months since I last wrote in this blog.

Recalling and analysing activities undertaken in such a long time is definitely impossible. Too many to recall and too much to analyse.

Ones that I could remember clearly are my trip to Rome and Paris, frequent visits to Brunei, upgrading process of ISDEV to a Centre of Excellence (CoE), and the design of ISDEV Complex, first near the Co-Curriculum Centre and later beside the Harapan Lake in USM Penang campus.

All relates very much to endeavours in exhibiting the beauty of Islam and the dynamics of its systems.

I talked about the need of an Islamic Research Methodology in Rome, strengthening Islamic networkings in Brunei, intensifying Islamic excellence via the upgrading of ISDEV to a CoE in USM, and realising the dynamics of waqf via the construction of ISDEV Complex beside the Lake.

May Allah SWT bless and help us all, Insha-Allah.